Bengals-Steelers Preview

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VS.

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PREVIEW
NOVEMBER 15, 2009

TIME: 1 p.m.

PLACE:  Heinz Field, DD GrassMaster

TV: CBS team of Jim Nantz (play-by-play), and Phil Simms (analyst). Live on Channel 12 in Cincinnati, Channel 10 in Columbus, OH, Channel 7 in Dayton, OH, Channel 27 in Lexington, KY, and Channel 32 in Louisville, KY.

RADIO: Play-by-play man Brad Johansen and analyst Dave Lapham on 700-AM (The Big One), 1530-AM (Homer) and 102.7-FM WEBN on "Triple Cast" Cincinnati flagships of the 25-station Bengals radio network.

The game can also be heard on Westwood One. Howard David (play-by-play) and Dan Reeves (analyst).

INJURIES
CIN: WR Chris Henry (forearm) out; S Roy Williams (forearm) appeared to suffer a setback Thursday when he didn't practice after having a full go Wednesday. He has missed the last three games and four of the last five. WLB Keith Rivers (calf) and LG Evan Mathis (ankle) didn't practice Wednesday and Thursday and appear to be doubtful. FB Jeremi Johnson (chest) was limited Thursday after missing practice Wednesday. DEs Robert Geathers (hip) and Frostee Rucker (neck) were limited both Wednesday and Thursday.

PIT: Starting DE Travis Kirschke (calf) didn't practice Wednesday or Thursday and it looks like he won't play. OLB Lawrence Timmons (ankle) missed Monday night's game but worked long enough Thursday that it looks like he'll be back in the starting lineup. S Ryan Clark, who missed the Monday night because of a health issue, is back in the lineup.
» Complete Injury Report

THE SERIES
Steelers lead, 48-31; 26-13 at home, 5-3 at Heinz.

NOTEWORTHY» The Bengals are gunning for their sixth straight AFC North victory, their most since a six-game run from Nov. 6, 2005-Nov. 5, 2006.

» The Bengals are looking to be at least 7-2 for the fifth time in club history (2005, 1988, 1982, 1976, 1975).

» The Bengals are 15-9-2 in November under head coach Marvin Lewis, 7-4 on the road.

» Bengals RB Cedric Benson's 198 carries at the halfway point would have led the Bengals in a full 16-game schedule nine times. In becoming the second-leading rusher in club history James Brooks had fewer than 198 carries in six of his eight seasons.

» Benson is looking for his third straight 100-yard rushing game, a feat that has happened only three times in Bengals history and never done by the likes of Brooks and Rudi Johnson. Paul Robinson did it in that first season of 1968 and Corey Dillon did it twice, in 1997 and 1999.

» Last month Benson snapped Baltimore's streak of not allowing a 100-yard rusher at 39 games. Now he's trying to stop the Steelers streak at 26. The last time the Bengals rushed for 100 yards against Pittsburgh was Oct. 3, 2004 when Rudi Johnson had 123 yards in a 28-17 loss in Pittsburgh. That was 86 games ago. In the last 80 games the Steelers have allowed three 100-yard games.

» Bengals wide receivers Chad Ochocinco and Laveranues Coles are neck and neck on the all-time receptions list. The Ocho is 37th with 656 and Coles is right behind him at No. 38 with 653.

» Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau, a former Bengals head coach, is in his 51st NFL season. Current Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis is 51. LeBeau is 72. The combined age of the Bengals starting linebackers last week was 76.

» The Bengals are ranked No. 2 against the run. The last time they finished a season that high was 1983, when LeBeau was the Bengals secondary coach.

» Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer has a career record of 38-35. Boomer Esiason was 62-61 as a Bengal.

» Cornerbacks Johnathan Joseph and Leon Hall lead the Bengals with four interceptions each. The Bengals are one of only two teams to have two players with at least four interceptions. Cornerback Asante Samuel leads the Eagles with five and cornerback Sheldon Brown has four. Hall has 12 career picks and Joseph has nine, combining for the 21 of Tory James, fifth on the Bengals all-time list.

NFL RANKINGS
CIN: Tied for 16th in scoring, 12th in offense (ninth rushing, 18th passing); 14th in defense, (second rushing, 25th passing), tied for 10th in turnover margin at plus two.

PIT: 13th in scoring, fifth in offense (15th rushing, fifth passing), fifth in defense (first in rushing, 14th passing), 22nd in turnover margin at minus-two.

COACHES
CIN: Marvin Lewis 52-51-1 regular season, 0-1 postseason in his seventh season, 4-10 vs. Steelers.

PIT: Mike Tomlin 31-13 in his third season, 4-1 vs. Bengals and Lewis.

THE WEATHER
The National Weather Service in Wilmington, Ohio is calling for partly sunny skies in Pittsburgh with no chance of rain and a high of 62 degrees accompanied by a five-mile-per-hour wind out of the south.

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